Canadian converter Gelpac invests in W&H flexo press, blown-film line, palletizer for Quebec plants

Gelpac, a Canadian converter of multiwall and polyethylene bags, has invested in a FLEXA II printer, ARCOMAT palletizer (both for converting), and a 3-layer OPTIMEX II blown-film line (above), all from Windmoeller & Hoelscher, for its plants in Marieville and Farnham, Quebec.

Founded in 1956, Gelpac is well known for producing high-quality, multiwall and plastic bags. They are also renowned for having a resourceful group of talented engineers who possess the ability to fine-tune older equipment and make it work like new, including multiwall equipment from W&H.

What makes this partnership and purchase so special is not only that the machinery is new, but that the relationship and incredible trust were built during the COVID-19 pandemic, over Microsoft Teams, without having met in-person until after the purchase was completed.

Jonathan Blanchard Granger, Corporate Director of Engineering & Maintenance at Gelpac, says, “We were looking for a printer for our multiwall equipment and opened talks with W&H subsidiary, GARANT. The conversation led to a 6-color FLEXA II printer. At the same time, we explored used equipment, but after carefully assessing cost and risk factors, the FLEXA II made more sense."

The press, which is one of the first in operation, is running well. Gelpac and W&H worked closely to train the operators and help them master the press. “The ARCOMAT palletizer is exceptional; it runs fast and is highly accurate,” adds Granger.

While the other two orders were in the works, Gelpac reached out again, this time about a 3-layer blown-film line for its plastic-bag business. Granger explains, “The OPTIMEX II was attractive because of the film quality and that we could run back-to-back winders with multiple ups. We knew the film quality would be good and the support from W&H is there, which made the decision to buy a new line easy.”